Thursday, August 07, 2008

Liturgy: Political correctness is a disease

This comes from a thread on the Catholic Answers Forum about Mass Settings (the music chosen for the Ordinary of the Mass). We eventually got to the topic of chant used in the Mass. Here is part of a post of mine; the first part is what someone else said, the rest is my response. The final paragraph is my chef-d'ouevre.

But I happen to know that our Catholic school just hired a new music teacher who is rumored to be "contemporary" in her approach to Catholic music.
It's dangerous to sink your anchor into the topmost level of the ocean floor... if you know what I mean. It's a bit ignorant (and maybe even disingenuous) to study the "moderns" without studying the "classics". Especially since the Church has been pretty straightforward about sacred music being such an invaluable treasure. Why bury that treasure? Why ignore it? Why deprive others of it?

Can you imagine a math teacher who doesn't do algebra because it's just so old? Or calculus because some white male invented it? (Oh, yeah, wasn't there that "new math" back in the 60's that didn't stick around too long...)

Or an English teacher who only taught neologisms and contemporary words (i.e. slang), and avoiding words which are very old or which come from (gasp!) other languages like Latin. A church "pastor" would need to be called something else, a college "campus" would need a new name, etc. (Those words are straight out of Latin.)

Or a history teacher who started with 1960. Or a geography teacher who only talked about recently-emerging countries, or neglected to talk about plate tectonics. Or a biology teacher who considers the Catholic monk Gregor Mandel's work on genetics to be out of date and instead dives right into DNA (but nevermind those two white males who discovered it, they're old fogies) and cloning.

It's preposterous.

This politically-correct disease will only make us slaves to politics (rather than people who can shape politics). But if we become historically-correct, we will not be "slaves" to history (which we are cannot escape) but will stop trying to rewrite it; we'll accept it, learn from it, and move on to shape the future.

1 comment:

Tim A. Troutman said...

Ugh. I'm having flash backs to the day they installed the new music director at our parish.

First thing she ever says to my mostly male schola was a remark lamenting the second reading of the liturgy because she didn't understand it. "It's only there because some MAN put it there".